Shoppers in southern Alberta are finally getting into the holiday spirit.
Christmas shopping is starting to pick up after a delayed push as the countdown to December 25 continues, according to one Lethbridge business owner.
“This year it didn’t really start until this past week,” says Nicole Parder, owner of Impressions Gifts and Gourmet. “It’s been a really late start to the season for us and we’ve heard that from a lot of businesses.”
As more gifts are bought and the holiday bills start to pile up, December can be an expensive time for some.
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“Putting food on the table, mortgage rates and everything else is going up,” says Sarah Stachiw, PR and communications specialist at Bromwich and Smith.
“Now we add spending for our holiday season, friends and gifts. It is overwhelming for many Canadians.”
Debt relief specialists Bromwich and Smith released this year’s 12 Financial Blunders of Christmas.
The list includes late night online shopping, shopping while hungry and not comparing prices as some of the most common mistakes shoppers make around the holidays.
Vacation Financial Planning
First on the list is overbought.
Stachiw says planning ahead is the best way to avoid any shopping mistakes.
“Be Santa Claus. Make your list, check it twice.
“If you go into a store and you don’t know what you’re buying or you miss things, you end up going back to the store and buying more stuff. It’s just going to be a big pattern.”
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Local businesses echo this advice and encourage customers to be prepared and give themselves plenty of time to put their gifts under the tree.
“Don’t wait, hurry up and get it done,” says Nancy Graham, manager at Cupper’s Coffee and Tea.
“Be aware that shipping costs are currently expensive due to freight and fuel surcharges.
“Shortages are not as bad as in previous years, but there are still some products that are difficult to get hold of.”
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